Carol Klein and Joe Swift are at Gardeners’ World Live in Birmingham. Joe casts his expert eye over the spectacular show gardens, while Carol focuses on the delights of the floral marquee.
Back at Longmeadow, Monty Don catches up with various tasks to ensure that his garden stays in tip-top condition all summer long. Monty Don incorporates a dramatic black-purple phormium as the centrepiece to his summer pots in the Jewel Garden.
In Gardeners World episode 13 2015:
1. How to make a hotbed
Hotbeds last flourished in the era of the Victorian kitchen garden. They are a great way of extending the growing season at a time of year when the light levels are increasing but the soil is still cold. If you make them in late winter or early spring, you can be harvesting salads, potatoes and other vegetables from March through to May. Jack First is an expert in making hotbeds. Here he shows Joe Swift how he does it at his allotment in West Yorkshire.
2. Mulch strawberries
As strawberries start to develop, it’s worth giving them a mulch of straw. This helps to protect the fruit from being splashed by soil when it rains and keep weeds at bay. Make sure you place the strawberries on top of the straw to prevent them from sitting on cold, damp soil.
3. Support broad beans
After a slow start, broad beans are now putting on rapid growth and may need staking. You can create a simple support framework using bamboo canes and string. This will help prevent the plants from flopping over and make easier work of picking the pods.
4. Plant out cannas and dahlias
Now that all risk of frost has passed, it’s safe to plant out tender perennials. These might include dahlias and cannas which will grow rapidly with the heat of summer. Remember to harden off them before planting them out.